The Great Battle of Hansan Festival

By Valeria Voelkl

Commemorating the Great Battle of Hansan in 1592, the Great Battle of Hansan Festival is held in Tongyeong to honor the patriotism shown by Admiral Yi Sun-sin throughout the Imjin War. Held five days a year, 2019's festival is from August 10-14 and open to visitors of all ages.

During the festival, the main events are a parade, a recreation of the Great Battle of Hansan, ocean sports, and hands-on activities. Furthermore, visitors will be able to see models of the turtle ship that was personally designed by Admiral Yi and replica ships from the Japanese navy that were fashioned to recreate the events that took place. By attending this event, one will be able to learn the historical significance of the battle, understand the cultural impacts that it has made, and enjoy the natural scenery. Without further ado, let us set sail to the Battle of Hansan in Tongyeong!

  • Location

In order to make haste to the battlegrounds, one must first know how to get to them! Located in Tongyeong-si (Culture Square, Yi Sun-shin Park, Gyeongsangnam-do), the Great Battle of Hansan Festival is a journey that must be undertaken by only the strongest of warriors. In order to get there, it is recommended that one takes an express bus from Seoul to Tongyeong Bus Terminal.

From there, you can take City Bus 41 or 42 to the festival venue. If you would like, you could always drive to the site or take other modes of transportation (taxi, etc.), but it is ultimately up to you.  Once you have arrived and have settled down, you can freely enjoy the Tongyeong Great Battle of Hansan Festival and check out the turtle ship replicas. Of course, make sure to keep tabs on the time so that you do not miss out on any of the major events!

  • The Festival  

The Great Battle of Hansan Festival has countless events and performances that keep its visitors excited and active. Since this festival is held all over Tongyeong, here are the main events to attend to get the most out of your experience:

On the first day of the festival, there will be a naval vessel that will dock at the Tongyeong Port. In honor of Admiral Yi Sun-sin, a ceremony will take place in Chungnyeolsa Temple. 

On the second day, a naval parade known as the Gunjeom Ceremony will take place at Sebyeonggwan, which was once one of the main offices of the naval bases in the Joseon Era. Afterwards, the Samdosuguntongjesa Parade will be performed along the downtown streets of Tongyeong. 

Usually held the fourth day of the festival, a reenactment of the Battle of Hansan will take place off the shores of Hansando Island at 6:00 p.m. Seeing as the ships will be shooting fire and lasers into the sky, rest assured that you will definitely enjoy this historical light spectacle.  

By the end of the festival, you will be left in complete awe and wonder. Aside from these events, the Great Battle of Hansan Festival has a lot more to offer. For instance, some of the traditional performances that will be held are the following: the Tongyeong Tallori and Taekkyon and the Namhaean Byeolsingut. Furthermore, you can also partake in making your own turtle ship and a mother-of-pearl craft. 

Aside from attracting many visitors for its spectacular presentations, the traditional atmosphere and realistic architectural displays have also captivated many individuals. Furthermore, Tongyeong is a beautiful and serene place that is full of nature. 

After experiencing all of the events held, you will be able to truly enjoy and appreciate the historical aspect of Korean culture. By creating a realistic atmosphere and hosting countless events, the Tongyeong Festival is able to give its visitors a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Does your country have a large scale event that commemorates fallen heroes? If so, you should still stop by this festival so that you can compare it to the one you see at home and have an eye-opening experience. By the end of the Tongyeong Great Battle of Hansan Festival, you will be able to relish the spoils of war and free the warrior inside of you! 

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Written by Valeria Voelkl

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